These figures don’t surprise me. I’m not sure what gelled since New Years Eve, but something has indeed spurned people to sign up for the site that in the past barely used any web apps beyond email and google. My father, aunt, uncle, even my great uncle (in his 80s!) are now on Facebook. Believe me when I say its truly surreal to be sitting around a table at a family function with a group of 50 and 60 somethings as they chat away about status updates and friend requests.
So what does this mean for business? Simple: a faster, more effective way to get your message out than ever. My client Hotchkis Performance has an active and vibrant facebook page, with hundreds of fans and industry insiders signed up as friends. With the new Facebook format, every time we attend an event, launch a product or do something cool, Dennis (Hotchkis’ in-house Marketing maven) posts an udpate on both Facebook and Twitter. The responses have been overwhelmingly positive. It’s like having a little PR Newswire Feed built into your cell phone.
Of course like Uncle Ben says, “With great power comes great responsibility,” and that applies to facebook as well as webslinging superheroes. Just because you can post updates ten times a day about every little thing, doesn’t mean you should. Keep the posts real, timely, and interesting and your friend list (and reach) will grow.
Don’t look now, but the number of Americans over 35, 45, and 55 on Facebook is growing fast. In the last 60 days alone, the number of people over 35 has nearly doubled. Developers and marketers may want to think about how to serve this group of new users.
Here are the latest stats on Facebook’s US audience gender and age demographics, according to the company:
Facebook US Audience Growth, Last 180 Days
Looking at Facebook US audience growth over the last 180 days, it’s clear that Facebook is seeing massive increases in adoption amongst users 35-65. The fastest growing demographic on Facebook is still women over 55 – there are now nearly 1.5 million of them active on Facebook each month.
The biggest growth in terms of absolute new users over the last six month came amongst users 35-44. Over 4 million more US women 35-44 and nearly 3 million more US men 35-44 used Facebook in March 2009 compared to September 2008.
US Facebook Users By Age and Gender
With the rapid growth amongst older users, the majority of US Facebook users are now over 25. There are now 6 million users 13-17, 19.5 million 18-25, 13.4 million 26-34, 9.7 million 35-44, 4.6 million 45-54, and 2.8 million over 55. In other words, there are more Facebook users 26-44 than 18-25 today.